The “Alpine Prince” - a chamois - looks proudly and gracefully at the hikers passing by. A work of art that seems a little out of line at first glance, as it is the only bronze cast among all the stone sculptures. Close to the mountain brooklet carrying waters from the glacier in Niedertal side valley, the head of a chamois stands on a 1.20 m high boulder - drawing our attention to the non-human inhabitants in this mountain area.
Chamois as an Alpine animal is also a creature that appears as a companion to mythical female spirits in legends and stories. According to legend, these mythical “Salige Fräulein” live in sparkling palaces inside the glacier. Hunters who ascend to such high Alpine regions in order to shoot chamois are calmed by these female spirits and seduced into their realm. Once a hunter returned from the icy palace to his village with the promise not to kill animals any more. In case he should forget his promise and continues hunting chamois, the punishment of the patron goddess will overtake him and he will fall into the mountain abyss.
As the Alpine prince of the goddesses in this mountain empire, the chamois is also a symbol of respect for the mountain’s nature. What a perfect place here at the entrance to Niedertal side valley, which leads up to Niederjoch col and the glaciers around Similaun. Who knows if the mythical female spirits still live up there?